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This story starts as just another morning in smalltown USA. Human beings, apparently chosen at random, mysteriously disappear. Only two percent of the population, unlike the fifty percent in Avengers: Endgame , but the effect on human society is similarly sobering.
Three years later, human society is still badly damaged. Sheriff Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) tries to hold things together. His biggest case is that of the mysterious dog-hunter who is after a pack of feral dogs which are living off deer they kill in the woods.
The Sheriff's daughter Jill Garvey ( Margaret Qualley ) and her school-friends attend a sex party.
Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ) and her cultists are in town, stalking Meg Abbott ( Liv Tyler ). The cultists do not speak, but they all seem to be chain-smokers. Their creed is unclear, but it involves the disappearances.
Sheriff Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) conducts a Missing Persons check on Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ) and her cultists. He is not welcome there, because his wife Laurie Garvey ( Amy Brenneman ) is one of the cult members. Meg Abbott ( Liv Tyler ) is also living with the cult, but has not joined them yet as a full member.
The Sheriff's daughter Jill Garvey ( Margaret Qualley ) is in a coffee shop when she sees a revolver in the handbag of Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ). Jill and her school-friends play at being Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys, and spend the school day following the woman around.
There is a subplot about a cultist (Patterson Joseph - Timeless ) who is targetted by a trigger-happy SWAT team. He uses sexual healing on hot teenage girls, which is technically illegal in the USA (as is jaywalking). However, this should be outside the jurisdiction of the BATF as it does not involve alcohol or tobacco or firearms. The cult also includes Tom Garvey (Chris Zylka - True Blood ) and Pete (Peter Berg - Battleships ) who also directed the double-episode.
Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ), the town preacher, has a problem. He is a conspiracy theorist, who refuses to believe that the Departures are a religious event like The Rapture . But when he puts up posters listing all the Departed peoples' sins, their surviving relatives are generally unhappy.
Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ) and her cultists are now stalking Matt. They are the only people who really want to see him, as his congregation has dwindled to nearly nothing. Now it turns out that the bank has foreclosed on the church, and someone has bought the premises. Matt has a day to find a hundred and twenty thousand dollars.
Someone stole the baby doll from the town's nativity display. Sheriff Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) has more important things to worry about, with Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ) and her cultists planning to provoke another riot.
Tom Garvey (Chris Zylka - True Blood ), the sheriff's son, is still babysitting the pregnant girl. She is attacked by a maniac who had a dream about her, so Tom takes her to hospital for a check-up. Naturally the doctor assumes he is a wife-beater, so he has to dodge the orderlies and security guards. The pregnant girl is unhelpfully selfish to her protector.
The Sheriff's daughter Jill Garvey ( Margaret Qualley ) and her school-friends know what happened to the missing Jesus doll.
One of the cultists, a woman named Gladys, is abducted and ritualistically murdered by persons unknown. The Sheriff investigates, but the local townsfolk are unwilling to institute a curfew. The BATF are informed, since they now handle Cults, and their bureacracy interferes with the investigation. Worse, their standard procedures seem to involve Waco tactics - as we saw a few episodes ago.
Laurie Garvey ( Amy Brenneman ) is in shock over the murder. Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ) takes her for a drive, and gives her an opportunity to unwind. Since Dowd is best known as Auntie in The Handmaid's Tale , it is nice to see a different side to one of her characters.
Finally we get an episode about Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ). She starts by flirting with Sheriff Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) when they meet at the court-house, since they are getting divorced from their respective spouses on the same day. Then the focus switches to her job, as a government employee in the Dept of Sudden Disappearances.
Nora is a panelist at a conference for Departure-related industries. Since all we have seen so far is the cults' responses to the event, it is nice to see the official response as well. Unfortunately a gate-crasher stole Nora's ID card, and tries to get her banned from the hotel.
The Sheriff's daughter Jill Garvey ( Margaret Qualley ) and her school-friends are hanging out when they discover her grandfather (Scott Glenn - Castle Rock ) has escaped from the asylum. His plan is to get his son a copy of National Geographic, specifically the one from May of 1972. Apparently the answer to everything is in that issue. Will our hero bother to actually read it?
The Sheriff is having blackouts. He has no memory of acquiring a dog, and his father points out that there is a pharmacy worth of sleeping medication in his room.
Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ) is willing to escalate things. It is not so much that she does not believe that the BATF will exterminate the cult, or that the townsfolk will sit back and watch with glee ... more that she just does not care. We discover a bit more about the Cult's plans, and the identity of the person who killed Gladys.
This episode is a flashback to before the disappearances. Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) is just a cop, not the Sheriff - his father (Scott Glenn - Castle Rock ) is still in charge. The town is being terrorised by a wild deer that is wandering into buildings. A young boy suggests the animal is lonely because it cannot find its family.
Sheriff Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) calls on Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ), the town preacher, to help clean up his mess. Later he gets a conversation with his father (Scott Glenn - Castle Rock ), which seems like exposition but just confuses things. He also meets the cultist (Patterson Joseph - Timeless ), in an unexpected fashion.
The Guilty Remnant's evil plan is finally revealed. The purpose of the photos and clothes, plus the mysterious packages, is not what it looks like. Still, it has potentially devastating consequences.
The show has a new credits sequence, but the actors names are mostly the same despite the fact very few recurring characters appear. Even people who died in Season One are listed.
The story shifts to the town of Miracle, Texas, where not a single person Departed on the special day. This episode centres around an African-American family: John Murphy (Kevin Carroll - The Walking Dead ), his wife Erika Murphy ( Regina King ) and their teenagers Michael Murphy (Jovan Adepo - ) and Evangeline Murphy ( Jasmin Savoy Brown ).
Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ) has moved to the town and is the Baptist church's guest preacher. Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ), his daughter Jill Garvey ( Margaret Qualley ) and his girlfriend, Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ), also move into the town. Well, Nora is Matt's sister so it makes sense they would stick close.
This episode starts up where the previous Season left off. Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) and his girlfriend, Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ) adopt the baby. Unfortunately Kevin feels bad about what happened to Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ), and takes it upon himself to make amends. She starts to haunt him.
The Garvey family move to Miracle, Texas. We get the events of the previous episode from their perspective, instead of the Murphys.
Meg Abbott ( Liv Tyler ) is now a senior member of the cult.
The episode starts with the climax of episode one, from the perspective of Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ). When Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) gets back and explains what happened, she joins him on the search team.
John Murphy (Kevin Carroll - The Walking Dead ) has a suspect in mind. He drags Kevin along on a revenge mission against his former friend who read him a poor fortune. Luckily John's wife Erika Murphy ( Regina King ) is a surgeon, and can patch people up when they get shot.
Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ) wants to discover more about his wife's condition. He takes her to the nearest hospital, outside the town limits. The tests reveal a shocking change - somehow the coma-wife is pregnant.
On the way home, Matt plays good samaritan and learns that no good deed goes unpunished. He gets a concussion, a broken thumb, and by enduring the Texas sunshine without a hat he risks death by sunstroke. Unfortunately the Park Rangers do not bother to give him proper medical care. Instead they lock him out of the town,
The good news is that there is a secret back door into the town. The bad news is that it is through a storm drain. By incredible coincidence, that is exactly the moment there is a torrential downpour of rain.
Erika Murphy ( Regina King ) is dodging the DSD official who is in town to investigate the disappearances. Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ) tries to help out, and seeks to obtain a copy of the new questionnaire.
Nora has problems of her own. A scientist is in town with a new theory. While MIT believes the Disappearances are linked to locations, the new theory is that they are focused on certain people. Nora is accused of being one of these people, nicknamed Lenses.
Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) has come out about the fact he is haunted by Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ). As a result, his girlfriend Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ) has abandoned him and his daughter Jill Garvey ( Margaret Qualley ) refuses to help him. The only one who offers assistance is Grandpa Murphy (Steve Williams - X-Files ). Unfortunately to defeat Patti he must battle her - on her own turf, the land of the dead.
Laurie ( Amy Brenneman ) comes to town, looking for her son Tommy. She offers Kevin help, because as well as being his ex-wife she was also a trained psychotherapist.
This starts with the backstory of Meg Abbott ( Liv Tyler ). Her mother died the day before the Departure. A few months later, Meg and her fiance visited Miracle Park so she could meet the psychic from The Leftovers (2014) [Season 2, Episode 1] Axis Mundi. She also met Evangeline.
In the main timeline, Meg is now running her group of the Guilty Remnant. They are acting like a terrorist group, which will only provoke overreaction by the Federal authorities. Adina Porter and the other bosses try to hold her to account.
Laurie ( Amy Brenneman ) and her son Tommy are still deprogramming Cultists. However, Tommy becomes cynical and disenchanted. We discover what happened to him while Laurie spent the previous few episodes looking for him.
Meg visits Miracle - well, the shanty town at the gates. Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ) has exiled himself there, until coma-wife wakes up, and recognises her.
This starts with the ending of The Leftovers (2014) [Season 2, Episode 1] Axis Mundi, but from Evangeline's perspective.
Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) has got at least some of his memory back. But since the police got his palm-print, it was only a matter of time until they get a match.
John Murphy (Kevin Carroll - The Walking Dead ) is a powerful force, whose performance dominates this episode. He has seethed with rage for the entire Season, but now we see his fear and his frustration.
Kevin ends up in the Land of the Dead again. Can he escape the Grim Reaper a second time?
The Season starts by tying up the loose ends of the previous story. Meg Abbott ( Liv Tyler ) and the Guilty Remnant had conquered Miracle. Now the US Government launches its counter-strike.
Years later, Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) is now the Chief of Police in Miracle. He tries to keep a lid on the craziness. The next crazy in town is the dog-hunter from Season One, who thinks that the dogs have mutated into human form and have infiltrated human society at the highest level.
Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ) is secretly writing a new sequel to the Bible. This is The Book of Kevin, and is based on the events of the show to date. As he continuously updates it, future episodes may appear and the show gets increasingly meta.
Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ) is still working for the DSD. She gets a mysterious call summoning her to St Louis, so she turns up for the meeting and hears a proposal. A group of scientists think the disappearances are caused by radiation. They built a human-sized transport pod, and flood it with radiation while volunteers are inside. This may sound like the teleportation pods in The Fly , but in reality it would be more like a giant microwave oven.
As with the previous episode, the epilogue is set in Australia. Grace ( Lindsay Duncan ) and her friends enact a scene from the Book of Kevin.
This episode follows Kevin's father (Scott Glenn - Castle Rock ) as he works his way down a songline in Australia. His belief is that he can prevent the next apocalypse, a torrential downpour, if he copies the Aboriginal tribal dances. Of course, the locals are fiercely protective of their secret rituals. It seems that not only do they have laws against copyright theft, they also have laws against cultural appropriation.
While traveling across Oz, the old man also proof-reads the Book of Kevin courtesy of Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ).
Finally, we get the scene with Grace ( Lindsay Duncan ) from the previous episode - from the new perspective.
Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) and Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ) go to Australia. She smuggles twenty thousand dollars in cash, because the legal limit is ten thousand per person. Of course, she could have given half the money to Kevin and they would have been within the legal limit.
In Melbourne, Kevin learns that his father (Scott Glenn - Castle Rock ) has been reported missing. Worse, he thinks he sees Eve - who supposedly died with the Remnant. Is she a ghost, like Patti - or just a halucination?
Nora meets with Dr. Eden ( Katja Herbers ) and her team, who test her. They ask her the same question as the man in the desert that Kevin's father encountered. The answer actually creates more questions.
This starts with an incident aboard a French nuclear submarine. It explains the references to an explosion in the previous episode. In a world where everyone is driven to the edge of sanity, it all seems to make a certain kind of sense.
Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ) hires a cargo plane to fly him to Melbourne. Yes, somehow a twin-engine prop plane is meant to take him from Texas all across the Pacific ocean without apparent stops for fuel.
John Murphy (Kevin Carroll - The Walking Dead ) and his wife Laurie ( Amy Brenneman ) - Garvey's ex-wife - come along for the ride. This leads to a lot of stress for Matt, and it illustrates how difficult it is to keep a secret in a small community.
The plane gets diverted to Tasmania, so they have to catch a ferry-boat to Melbourne. Not only is it an eleven-hour trip each way, but they will have to share the boat with a group of religious cultists. This particular cult is a group of hedonists who celebrate the story of a randy lion by having wild orgies. Matt tries to tolerate them, but things get complicated.
Another passenger is a man who, like Kevin Garvey, apparently came back from the dead. While Kevin is a reluctant Jesus, the other man proudly proclaims he is God ... and decides to smite people whenever feels like it. This forces Matt to confront his own faith.
This episode is told from the perspective of Laurie ( Amy Brenneman ). It starts with the events that drove her to join the Guilty Remnant, before the start of Season One.
In the main storyline, Laurie joins John Murphy (Kevin Carroll - The Walking Dead ) and the others at the farmhouse belonging to Grace ( Lindsay Duncan ). Kevin's father (Scott Glenn - Castle Rock ) needs Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) to visit the land of the dead again, to get the world-saving dance. Of course, this makes about as much sense to Laurie as the French sailor in the previous episode who launched a nuclear missile to prevent the plot of Godzilla, King of Monsters from coming true.
Prior to that, Laurie helped Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston - Dr Who (2005) ) and Nora Durst ( Carrie Coon ) as they keep Dr. Eden ( Katja Herbers ) and her lesbian lover under surveillance. Nora is obsessed with making them put her in the big microwave.
Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) returns to the Land of the Dead for the third time. Previously it was a hotel in America, but now it is a series of Australian locations.
The afterlife is a weird alternate universe, where Kevin is President ... and leader of the Guilty Remnant. Patti Levin ( Ann Dowd ) is Secretary of Defence, and Meg Abbott ( Liv Tyler ) is the Vice President.
As well as the President, Kevin is also his identical twin brother ... an assassin who can bypass the Secret Service's biometric scanners.
The main storyline concerns Nora when she looks much older, living by herself in rural Australia. Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux - Your Highness ) turns up and tries to romance her. Is she in an alternate reality, a form of purgatory, or in the actual future of the timeline?
Finally, Kevin and Nora decide to trust each other and be truthful about their experiences. This leads on to the revelation of the fate of the Disappeared, although as always it seems a bit ambiguous. Anyway, the story is tied up and given a fitting conclusion.